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Tuesday, March 16, 2010

My family friend delema

I have a delema.

Here's the situation:

For most of my childhood we spent summers at my grandma's.  We became very good friends with the family next door.  They had children our age, plus a few older ones we could (I did) look up to.  They were good friends every summer we were there, but once we stopped going we didn't stay in touch.

Fast forward to the days of Facebook. You can see where this is going. Their youngest is here in NYC.  Wow, we should have coffee, right? But after the invite was extended and turned into an invite for dinner at our place... some things began to worry me.

Here's the part where I tread a VERY careful line. I am about to tell you that this family friend has become uber religious, and while I have no problem with people taking joy, pleasure, peace, comfort, what have you from their belief...I have seen what I believe is good, decent, and tolerant behavior from religious people. I know what it looks like, and I know what it does not look like.

Now to the part that concerns me. Should I tell this friend that I am in an interfaith marriage?  If she doesn't know (it's possible), she might be uncomfortable or make my husband uncomfortable at the dinner we're hosting.  Or should I assume the better of her.  I once made an assumption on how a friend would respond to my interfaith relationship and I was totally wrong and very sorry. (Sorry!)

I guess I am wondering if, while plans are still tentative, I should give her the opportunity to back out. She's attending a missionary school.  She was not particularly religious (or not religious) when we were kids. 

I have talked this over with E, and he is ok with inviting her for dinner.  But I still haven't suggested a date because I'm dithering.

Thoughts?

2 comments:

  1. Oh dear, have I been there. My dad and stepmother are both evangelical, uber religious. I've spent a lifetime apologizing for having more mainstream beliefs. My best friend from high school - same thing. Had some drug problems in college and then became ultra religious and judge-y.

    I say this easily - because it's not me, of course, but only tell your friend if you think she could offend your husband. But if you're afraid of offending her, I say, screw it and don't tell her. Let her find out after she meets your great husband and beautiful Ranger. I've spent so much time tiptoeing around religious people who, by definition, are supposed to be accepting (though often are not). I'm dumping my own baggage here in your comment section, but I say challenge her to be the loving, kind person her faith demands, and if she starts trying to convert anyone - send her home without dessert. Amen.

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  2. Well...you can look at this two ways, in my opinion. On the one hand, tell her. Either she accepts you or she doesn't. Just because you don't agree with someone's beliefs, etc. is certainly no reason to attack anyone, esp. in their own home. You can tell someone your opinion in love, and then you can tell someone your opinion in anger. There's a BIG difference. Also, there's option two...why does it even have to come up? It's just dinner with someone you haven't seen in quite a while. It's not like you have to make her your sudden confidante or something. I say play it by ear. Religion, (though I think our faith should be a regular part of our lives and conversations) is one of those things you have to be careful what you say around people you don't know very well. And that, though sad but true, only because some people are fanatics and get angered very easily over very little. (Politics work that way, too, but I won't go there. LOL)

    Anyway, that is my meager opinion, for what it's worth.

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I'd love to know what you think:

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